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 Post subject: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Mon Jan 31, 2011 4:27 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2005 8:15 pm
Posts: 161
Is there a recommended Live Distribution that works and plays well with the ATI video?

(Looking to stream low-res SD video - my favorites, Slax, Mint, and Bruno Pup are falling down on the job, either crashing altogether, or incapable of delivering even modest frame rates.)

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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Mon Jan 31, 2011 5:40 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:56 pm
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Location: Prague, Czech Republic
elray wrote:
(Looking to stream low-res SD video - my favorites, Slax, Mint, and Bruno Pup are falling down on the job, either crashing altogether, or incapable of delivering even modest frame rates.)

That's because they (most likely) use the "default" vesa video driver. You need to find (or customize) a distro that has either proprietary ATi driver (fglrx) or opensource one (radeon/radeonhd). The latter should be bundled with at least some live distros. You either need to edit xorg.conf and replace "vesa" with "radeon" (plus some minor changes) or re-generate a new xorg.conf from scratch. Something like "X -configure" should work.

Aside from that, there might be ready-to-use solutions for you, http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=li ... multimedia (or similar search) reveals at least some candidates.


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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 6:45 am 
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Hi, as far as I know, the proprietary ATI Linux driver supports only new video cards from HDxxxx series. Canonical (developer of Ubuntu distro) announced that from Ubuntu 11.04 will be used new open-source driver Gallium3D - more powerful than usual radeon open-source driver.

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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 7:12 am 
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lukee wrote:
Hi, as far as I know, the proprietary ATI Linux driver supports only new video cards from HDxxxx series.

That's probably right, I recall something about removing support for older cards.

lukee wrote:
Canonical (developer of Ubuntu distro) announced that from Ubuntu 11.04 will be used new open-source driver Gallium3D - more powerful than usual radeon open-source driver.

Gallium3D is a 3D library, not a kernel driver. You still need DRM (as in Direct Rendering Manager) for it to work, ie. the "radeon" driver.
Gallium3D aims to "replace" Mesa 3D, not the "radeon" driver.


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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 7:14 am 
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Thanks comps for the explanation :) But does it mean, that some applications will run faster? And if yes, which ones?

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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 7:31 am 
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lukee wrote:
Thanks comps for the explanation :) But does it mean, that some applications will run faster? And if yes, which ones?

I'm no graphic kernel developer, but as far as I can remember, Gallium3D gains from KMS (kernel mode setting), which is why it's meant to replace Mesa (well, it's already part of it).
There were only UMS (user mode setting) drivers in the past, the Xserver used to have root privs, so it could use it's own drivers to access graphic hardware "directly" with little support from the kernel. That changed with KMS, where all the drivers are in the kernel and userspace simply tells the kernel "what" to render.

The Gallium3D is around for quite some time, but it became popular due to "KMS page flipping", which is going to be in 2.6.38. I found some fairly recent phoronix article about it, hope it helps - http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=a ... nded&num=1 .

PS: Don't trust articles older than ~10 days, gallium3d used to have pretty much poor performance not too long ago.


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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 9:31 am 
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comps wrote:
The Gallium3D is around for quite some time, but it became popular due to "KMS page flipping", which is going to be in 2.6.38. I found some fairly recent phoronix article about it, hope it helps - http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=a ... nded&num=1 .

To be more exact here - the sysctl itself has been around for some time now, page flipping isn't really "new", just the radeon KMS driver support is new. And the performance boost is mostly visible in Gallium3D.


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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 28, 2011 12:26 am 
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Slax, as in Backtrack?

This one? http://www.backtrack-linux.org/

Why? That distro (and it's older brother Slax) are meant for network penetration testing. Not for multimedia, or office, or things of that nature.

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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 28, 2011 1:48 am 
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A forum member told me he tried various distros on his X31 and he settled on Red Hat.

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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 28, 2011 12:24 pm 
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Im running uBuntu, and Macbuntu on mine. I have Fedora (Red Hat) on a T30 (very similar hardware) and it is also fine. On the small screen, the Macbuntu is amazing for its ease of use, nothing wrong with uBuntu either.

YMMV
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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 28, 2011 4:10 pm 
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Temetka wrote:
Slax, as in Backtrack?

This one? http://www.backtrack-linux.org/

Why? That distro (and it's older brother Slax) are meant for network penetration testing. Not for multimedia, or office, or things of that nature.

Backtrack is based on Slax. Slax itself is a generic modular live-cd (http://www.slax.org/). Go to that website, click "build slax" and simply select apps you want to have on the CD/DVD.


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 Post subject: Re: Live Distro for X31?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 28, 2011 11:32 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 5:22 pm
Posts: 118
Location: paris, france
Slax is a neat distro (fast loading considering its a live one) , comes with old but light / reliable kde 3.5 , can't find any info if it's been updated since their website looks like the same it was 2 years ago.

Mint 9 (previous version) was a good choice for multimedia / desktop usage. It's preconfigured nicely (they took the Suse start menu) and preinstall media codecs and stuff, worked out of the box on my x32. I can't speak for Mint 10 (current version) though.

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